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Russian military leaders have expressed concern about US plans
for a national missile defense system. Will defense technology be
limited by possibilities for a strategic imbalance? Is this just SDI
all over again?
(1301 previous messages)
- 10:54am Mar 22, 2001 EST (#1302
"it requires a lot of effort, patience,
sensitivity and imagination to put yourself into someone else's
shoes, so to speak. And even that will not guarantee the result -
one, who have never had a similar experience, may have a great
difficalty to understand."
That's absolutely true -- and a fundamental reason why, on
problems that are complicated, and difficult, staff work is
Ideas can be "somehow, too weak" -- that with more development,
can cease to be weak, can carry the day.
- 10:55am Mar 22, 2001 EST (#1303
Missile Crisis Intelligence Ripped - http://www.newsday.com/ap/text/international/ap186.htm
"On Oct. 4, 1962, the group discussed the ongoing work of
Operation Mongoose, a once-secret plan to cause disruptions in Cuba,
including blowing up power stations and planting U.S. intelligence
infiltrators. Attorney General Robert Kennedy, tapped by his brother
to oversee Mongoose, attended.
''The attorney general informed the group that higher
authority was concerned about the progress on the Mongoose program
and felt that more priority should be given to trying to mount
sabotage operations,'' minutes from the meeting said.
From other reports, it is understood that ''higher authority''
refers to President Kennedy, said Anna Nelson, a historian at
American University and a member of the JFK Assassination Records
Review Board, which requested release of the documents.
The records say that there was some discussion of mining Cuban
waters with devices ''appearing to be homemade and laid by small
aircraft operated by Cubans.''
Nelson said that plan didn't become reality.
''Either they never did it or we never knew about it,'' she
Kennedy formed his version of the advisory group in May 1961
with an executive order directing it to review intelligence work,
including ''highly sensitive covert operations relating to political
action, propaganda, economic warfare, sabotage, escape and evasion,
subversion against hostile states.''
The document adds that ''these covert operations are to be
conducted in such manner that, if uncovered, the U.S. government can
plausibly disclaim responsibility for them.''
Among those on the board were Clifford, chairman of the group
for most of the Kennedy years and later Lyndon Johnson's defense
secretary for a time; retired Gen. James ''Jimmy'' Doolittle, who
led the first bombing raid on Tokyo during World War II; and William
Baker, head of research at Bell Laboratories."
- 11:07am Mar 22, 2001 EST (#1304
Sometimes, the differences between two cultures are vast, on a
huge number of problems, but the most essential mismatches are few,
and if they can be understood in one place, that understanding
can be applied everywhere. I think that's true of the core
impasses between the West and Russia --- and there ARE plenty of
people of good faith in the West as a whole, and also in America.
Many of them, in fact, live in Washington of New York.
For example, I think if Russians actually understood how the
paradigm shift in boundary layer theory between 1956 and 1975
actually happened (in all its ugly, culture-bound details) they'd
know most of the things they'd need to deal with other impasses they
have to deal with.
I'm involved with another impasse, on an academic subject, with a
first rate University that is dealing, within American usages, with
tact, sophistication and much good will. Even so, you'd have much to
learn if you actually studied, at the level of personal interaction
and administrative function, how things are being done. And how
AFRAID the players are. And how the "defenses" in the system work.
Every kind of impasse you're ever likely to see between American and
Russians would be there to see, if people looked. My reasonably
educated guess is that if Russians asked for a chance to see this
administrative interaction, for the purpose of learning about
negotiating usages and difficulties, the details might well be
And the academics involved would be likely to work very hard, to
show how things really work -- because sentiments for peace, and
especially for nuclear safety, are very widely held, and
passionately felt, just below the surface of peoples' emotional
Of course, there might be many other ways of proceeding, too.
But some FACTS about the Cold War have to be nailed down
---- because once they are established, the justification for
continuing the horror loses legitimacy - and this could be widely
- 11:12am Mar 22, 2001 EST (#1305
I believe the story -- it fits a great deal I know, most of it on
the public record.
Some core facts are set out in DARK SUN: The making of the
Hydrogen Bomb by Richard Rhodes, who won a Pulitzer Prize for
THE MAKING OF THE ATOMIC BOMB.
The Bush administration seems to be reviving policies that were
very reckless when they were first set out, and not justified then,
but that are INSANE now. He's having a hard time keeping NATO
together with him, because military officers are often sane.
Maybe I should type out what's on the dust jacket of DARK SUN,
- 11:30am Mar 22, 2001 EST (#1306
I very much like to hope, my just born grandson will live in a
very different world, with no fear of nuclear castrophy.
It seems you are thinking about some real steps to be taken in
that direction. You mentioned the extensive staff work to be
required. I would be very interested to know more what do you have
in mind to the degree you feel comfortable to shear.
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